The adventure began with Arlath returning to Freespring after a long foray into Goblin territory for negotiations. He is on his way to the Journeyman’s Trade Center in the Shifter district. He arrives early in the morning and speaks to a colleague, Cybalt, at the front desk area. Discussing the terms of the agreement he was able to reach Arlath says that he did not achieve quite what was originally hoped of him, but was able to get the goblins to come to terms with a few concessions.
Cybalt immediately tasks him with another mission this time having to do with a hobgoblin named Vilmar. Vilmar has been disrupting trade with his operations and been irritating the shifter community for some time. A trusted informant has indicated that some sort of trade deal is occurring outside of the city, but they do not know exactly where. Arlath is to take two shifter brethren with him to speak to the informant and persuade him to give better directions to find the meeting. The informant is currently holed up in a bar called the Horned Harvest located in the kobold district. The two other shifters available for Arlath to take with him are Phylin and Sirel.
Focus shifts to Vargr who has spent the last several hours examining the exterior guard patrols of a building he has been contracted to break into. He was given a time and a door to enter where he is supposed to meet a saboteur vault guard who will take him to the “weapon” he is supposed to steal.
A challenge ensues as Vargr quickly tries to sneak across the large lawn to the door he is supposed to enter. A few close calls with the guards and he is able to get rather near his destination but stealth fails him as he runs into two stationary kobold guardsmen that he can’t sneak past. Forgoing stealth he dispatches them both quickly with thrown daggers and hides the bodies.
Scratching on the door a minotaur (Grakin) opens it and ushers him inside. Grakin says they are in luck as a special cleaning by the guards will leave the vault room empty so they should be able to sneak in and out unnoticed. They quickly weave their way through the building and get down to the vault door which Grakin opens with a key. Inside are tables and bookshelves strewn with uninteresting junk. Grakin approaches the door he says is supposed to hold their objective and spends some time fiddling with a strange panel next to it. Reading from a piece of paper he pushes on various buttons until the door opens.
Inside the room a humanoid automaton leans against the wall silently. Grakin manipulates another panel on the wall and the machine springs to life with the sounds of clockwork gears grinding and moving. Stating that it’s identification is the unit “Brutal 1” and that it awaits orders the construct begins gathering weapons from a rack nearby it and strapping them to its body. Vargr quickly surveys two other rooms within the vault and begins to pick their locks. Jamming the lock in the northern room he breathes a sigh of relief when he looks closer and sees that there is nothing interesting inside.
Moving to the room opposite it in the south he spies a pedestal with some sort of brass metallic object resting on it. Dispatching with the lock on the door and not seeing any obvious traps or tripwires he lightly steps into the room and grabs the piece of metal. Immediately a loud buzzing sound begins to ring throughout the halls and Grakin yells that they’re in trouble so they make haste for the door. Another challenge begins as the three of them try to make it to the end of the hallway before being trapped behind several large stone slabs that are lowering themselves from the ceiling.
Vargr quickly jams a dagger into the chain and pulley mechanism lowering the slabs and is able to slow their movements slightly, making it easier for everyone to dart underneath each piece of rock. The progress quickly but are almost trapped near the end as a cramp in Grakin’s leg causes him to slow down considerably. Finally at the end of the hallway they notice that the door at the end is shut and locked with no obvious lock available. Grakin motions them to a door on the side of the hall leading to a parallel length of tunnel adjacent to it. Using a key he opens the door and the three of them step into the other hall and straight into a group of guards milling around.
A battle begins between them and a kobold, two goblins, and a human guard who Grakin yells at and calls Parson. The kobold and goblins are dispatched easily but Parson is able to get a few choice hits in on Grakin who is slightly winded at this point. Even he falls however and the three of them are able to continue their escape. The next room reveals a poker table with some scattered coins on it that Vargr quickly loots, and a door leading to an underground tunnel. Grakin says that this tunnel leads into the sewers that lead back to bazaar outside of the city so they all dash inside to freedom.
Arlath and his companions have arrived outside of the Horned Harvest at this point. They note that there is only one obvious exit from the building so they head inside to find their informant who is named Dreegan, a human. Entering the bar they order a few beers and talk to a few of the patrons. Some kobolds and humans mingle along the bar and in another room a group of rowdy orcs are singing and drinking heavily.
As Arlath makes his way to the larger common room he is immediately noticed by a garishly dressed human with several facial piercings. The human yells, “Shifters!”, and points at Arlath and his crew. Several humans and some goblins draw weapons and being stalking towards them. The humans tap some crude clubs in the palms of their hands and the goblins draw short swords as they approach. Phylin unsheaths a bow from his back and knocks some arrows from his quiver, and Sirel pulls two blades from sheaths at his waist. Arlath thinks quickly and then yells to the orcs in giant-tongue that one of the goblins insulted their patron god Gruumsh. Easily able to convince the drunken louts that they were being insulted they toss down their beer mugs and join the battle.
The battle does not seem to proceed so well for Arlath and his friends Sirel is direly wounded several times in the melee and two of the orc drunkards fall to their wounds. The other orcs turn tail and flee the battle quickly. The shifters eventually prevail however and are able to corner the human Dreegan in a back room of the bar. A challenge begins as Arlath and the other shifters try to pry the exact location of the illicit deal from Dreegan.
They are able to get most of the information out of him but he seems to be holding something back in the end. Failing to convince him to give up everything Arlath decides that they have enough to go on for now. He sends Phylin back to the Journeyman’s trade center to round up any reinforcements that he can and he and Sirel head to the meeting spot.
Arriving at the ruins where the meeting is supposed to take place several hours early Arlath and Sirel hide in some tree cover outside of the area and wait patiently for the various players in this deal to arrive. Eventually an unsavory party of goblins and kobolds creep into the ruins, a couple of the goblins quickly disappearing from few to hide within the columns. Another hour passes and a group of three individuals approaches the ruins. A minotaur walks up to the group in the middle and begins to talk to the larger goblin who seems to be in charge. Unable to hear everything being talked about Arlath is easily able to tell when the deal goes sour as each of the two groups draws weapons.
Not sure which side he should ally himself with Arlath decides to help the minotaur and his companions as it seems they were betrayed by the goblins. Goblins and kobolds alike die quickly under blade and hammer. Arlath finds himself being assaulted by a mechanical construct during the battle and is forced to inflict terror on it with a spell. Coming to his senses Brutal recognizes that Arlath is helping him in this battle and the group unites to slay the rest of the goblins.
The leader of their betrayers, Griknan, chokes out these last words before dying: “Vilmar will not be pleased…” Grakin kicks at the body in disgust and stomps out of the ruins ignoring the shifters and their questions. Arlath speaks to Vargr and Brutal and is able to convince the both of them to come back to the Journeyman’s trade center to speak to his superiors concerning Vilmar.
Shared loot: 120 gold
Arlath loot: 15 gold, 48 silver
Vargr loot: 15 gold, 50 silver, map (on Griknan’s body), brass metallic device (from vault)
Vargr XP: 370
Arlath XP: 310
Brutal XP: 320